School exit road a no-go
August 8, 2019
There have been several dirt work machines working on the south side of Moorcroft High School over the last few weeks; the contractor has begun the process of upgrading the single ingress/egress from Country Club Lane into the existing south parking lot that, in turn, is receiving a new layer of black top.
According to Crook County School District Superintendent Mark Broderson, this work will be complete before the beginning of school on August 14.
The contractor cut in the new parking lot addition and started the dirt work for a road to join Rail Road Avenue, stopping approximately 12 feet from a stretch of two track roadway owned by Burlington Northern. This relatively short distance between the district owned property running along the east side of the parking lot and the municipal Rail Road Avenue at the south end of Little Horn Avenue is the hang-up that has essentially stopped the plan in its tracks.
After Moorcroft refused to accept responsibility for the $1800 annual lease payment, the district sought permission from the railroad company to develop a public easement along the private roadway. “I don’t think the railroad really cares about putting a road in there because we’d have to put some approaches in there for them [the crews] to get off and why would they want to do that? They can use it right now, it’s theirs.”
The only other option was traveling west from the lot between the south bleachers and their neighbor’s property and Broderson voiced his appreciation for neighbor Al Sisson, who attempted to assist with this endeavor, saying, “He was really good to work with but we’d have to move poles and we’d crowd his shop.” Thus leaving Burlington Northern the only remaining access point to the town.
Broderson spoke of the entire situation, “It’s been kind of a frustrating process. It does not look like we’ll be able to put that exit road out of the high school campus.”